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Millennium (1989)

PG-13 | | Drama, Sci-Fi, Thriller | 25 August 1989 (USA)
An NTSB investigator seeking the cause of an airline disaster meets a warrior woman from 1000 years in the future. She replaces the people from airplanes before they crash with corpses with the same features.

Director:

Michael Anderson

Writers:

John Varley (short story "Air Raid"), John Varley (screenplay)
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1 win & 5 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Kris Kristofferson ... Bill Smith
Cheryl Ladd ... Louise Baltimore
Daniel J. Travanti ... Arnold Mayer
Robert Joy ... Sherman
Lloyd Bochner ... Walters
Brent Carver Brent Carver ... Coventry
David McIlwraith David McIlwraith ... Tom Stanley
Maury Chaykin ... Roger Keane
Al Waxman ... Dr. Brindle
Lawrence Dane ... Vern Rockwell
Thomas Hauff ... Ron Kennedy
Peter Dvorsky ... Janz
Raymond O'Neill Raymond O'Neill ... Harold Davis
Philip Akin Philip Akin ... Briley
David Calderisi ... Leacock
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Storyline

Bill Smith, chief investigator for the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), has been assigned to determine whether human error is the cause of an airline crash. He and his team of investigators are very confused by the words on the cockpit voice recorder by the crew relating to the crash. But at the same time, a theoretical physicist named Dr. Arnold Mayer has a real professional curiosity about the crash, which borders on science fiction. While giving a university lecture, he talks about time travel and the possibility of visitors from the future. Smith discovers the involvement of an organization of time travellers from a future Earth irreparably polluted who seek to rejuvenate mankind from those about to perish in the past. Written by Anthony Pereyra <hypersonic91@yahoo.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

The people aboard flight 35 are about to land 1,000 years from where they planned to. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Sci-Fi | Thriller

Certificate:

PG-13 | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA | Canada

Language:

English

Release Date:

25 August 1989 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Millennium See more »

Filming Locations:

Canada See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$1,614,692, 27 August 1989

Gross USA:

$5,777,099

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$5,777,099
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In the final scene, the viewer hears Sherman say: "This is not the end. This is not even the beginning of the end. It is the end of the beginning." These lines are paraphrased and borrowed from Winston Churchill's 10 November 1942 speech at the Lord Mayor's Luncheon, in which he used similar language to describe the turning of the tide of the Second World War in favour of the Allies. See more »

Goofs

After Louise takes a shower, Sherman helps her put her uniform top on, but there is no sign she puts on or is wearing any other clothing. However, as the scene continues, Louise is seen wearing a type of pants/shorts as they walk together. See more »

Quotes

Dr. Arnold Mayer: [Addressing a lecture hall audience, possibly at the United Nations] We've talked about quarks and anti-neutrinos. But, what about people? It's quite a step from demonstrating that sub-atomic particles can travel backward through time to saying that people can. What would be the result of people traveling in time? For one thing, paradoxes become possible. Say you build a time machine, go back and murder your father when he was ten years old. That means you were never born. And if you weren't, ...
See more »

Alternate Versions

Two different endings of this film exist. The first simply shows the destruction of Futureworld after Bill and Louise step through the Gate. The second shows an actual trip through the Gate after Futureworld is destroyed. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Kids in the Hall: Episode #1.20 (1990) See more »

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User Reviews

 
A mixed bag
11 August 2007 | by NilsosmarSee all my reviews

Millennium is mixed bag. The script is reasonably good - not too exciting, but thoughtful and well constructed. But there are some problems that drag the movie down.

The romance/relationship at the heart of the story is not bad, and has been unfairly panned. It's actually one of the strengths of the story. Kristofferson does a good job of playing a rather dull character without a lot going for him... a working stiff without much of a life, who wakes up a bit when he meets Cheryl Ladd's character.

Ladd underplays her part nicely, with a nice understanding of the nuances and double meanings of some of her dialogue. The directing is fine, low key, and the editing is good (apart from the ending, which I doubt was the editor's choice). The script sparkles most when it deals with Ladd's character, her difficulties in communicating across a profound cultural barrier, her inadvertently humorous faux pas when interacting with a world very different from her own. The "cigarette scene" in the restaurant is a classic.

There are some problems, mainly around the ending, some of the acting on the part of the minor characters, and the character of Sherman. I won't reveal the ending, but I will say it was disappointing, and probably responsible for the cool reception the film received. The robot Sherman is poorly designed and conceptualized, and drags down the rest of the story. It's not a question of budget, in Sherman's case, but of someone without a good intuitive feeling for science fiction concepts, making decisions about that character. He's not campy, to my mind, he's an embarrassment.

Some people posting here have complained about the dialogue. I think they may be missing the profound reason for Ladd's character's odd choices of words, and what the words reveal about her. Others have complained about the scenes that are shown twice, telling the same story from different points of view. I can understand that people looking for a more action packed movie could have been bored by these scenes, but they do reveal key information; they're not just reruns of the first, they're revelations. They're an effective device for showing the parallel but very different points of view of the key characters.

In sum, Millennium is a reasonably good but not great movie. It's frustrating because a genuinely good movie could be made from the existing footage if the robot was redone (redesigned digitally after the fact and given a better voice and better dialogue), and if the final voice-over was omitted. But I still like watching it and appreciate the elements that are successful in the movie.


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